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Robert Wheater

a personal photoblog

Kym | Portraits

I don’t publish client work on the internet because almost all of my clients prefer privacy, so in order to get images to show on my blog and on the internet I use models and friends. Kym had never modeled before and wanted to try it out. Here are shots of her done in my edgy fashion/glamor style. I have only been a professional photographer for a year, starting right after art school at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco.
There were many challenges in this shoot, wind being the worst. Because I rarely shoot in studio and prefer environmental and on location sessions. Kym was great and we got some great shots. Remember that you can click images to view a larger version.




New Brochure [download here]

This is my new brochure. There is a wedding version of the brochure coming soon. I have revised all of my wedding services and the new wedding photography one will be up in a week.

Click here for the Robert Wheater Photography brochure

Glamor Photography

The beautiful model is Sunni. This particular photo is from a photo shoot a few months ago but I am working on a new editing style that is one of my favorites currently being used by a few of my favorite photographers. Photography style changes over time and only through really doing different things does our art as a photographer stand out. Not only is a style important to a photographer, it is essential. I am chosen as a photographer because of my style capability. I can create images that are clean crisp traditional black and whites, edgier vibrant colors but now I am really falling into a style that has really only become possible with digital photography. Airbrushing aside (I post process every image I take, it is the new dark room) the image was beautiful but I am working on a style that both shows the real person with the art of glamor photography.

Glamor Style Photographs

Glamor Style Photographs


Services and Prices Brochure 2010

Here is a download for my brochure for 2010. I prefer web brochures these days because I prefer a green manufacturing system. I am not going to tout that I am the greenest this or that… it is a way of life and nothing to advertise really. This web brochure is in .pdf format and if you need any assistance, email me and I can assist you.

Click here for the Robert Wheater Photography brochure

Portrait Session with Sunni

This was the second time I shot with Sunni and again, I had a blast. These images are a great example of the style you will see in my SnapRiot sessions and it was a great chance to see how much I am going to like my new SnapRiot photo sessions.

Sunni and I started on Main Street and just shot by the red door I love so much, it is a good comfort spot to develop a camera relationship to who I am photographing. Most people are ready to go before I am, I usually study someone for the first 5-6 shots and then let loose. Sunni was easy to warm up to, I think the first shot was one of the best as was the last. That’s a great session.








If you would like to book Robert Wheater for your photography, contact him by clicking here.

Shimaka [portrait session]

Shimaka was fun to shoot, sometimes there is a warm up time in order to shoot good portraits. There was none with her. I hope she really loves her portrait session. In my portrait sessions, I cover several locations, usually trying to get some good urban style, edgy looks and some classic portraits in nature. These images are the reason, I love shooting outside of the studio.

There are a lot of Visalia portrait photographers, so make sure you look at current work and not the best of their work over twenty years. Try to look at their blog if they have one and take a look at current work.

Shimaka’s portrait session was wonderful as you can see from the images. This wide variety of styles, poses and shots are very typical of my photo shoots.







If you would like to book Robert Wheater for a photo shoot, fill out this quick form and drop us a message on what you want. You can also email at or call at 559.334.3977. Robert is a photographer servicing Central California, from San Francisco to Los Angeles, although he calls Visalia, California his home.

Fashion Photographer

The beautiful Natalie

The beautiful Natalie

Over the weekend, my photography group got together to take a look at lighting. I used between 3-4 off camera strobes. Our model was the beautiful Natalie Symanski. Fashion photography is natural for me, the style and the look are part of the way I learned. I looked at fashion advertising and media when I needed inspiration for photo shoots. My wife gets a kick out of our magazine subscriptions today, she loves Maxim magazine and I love Vogue. She hates ads, I love them.

I am attracted to fashion photography like a moth to fire and I have found that it is definitely a niche of mine in the area. Fashion has a look that a lot of people can’t get down and can’t figure out. For my style of fashion photography, I move fast, I use a minimum of three strobes and I try and create dramatic shadows. I’ll shoot through objects like a plant to throw shadows across my backgrounds. I like to visualize myself as a viewer of the fashion, a critic of the situation in front of me instead of as a photographer. I try and think of a scenario that involves the camera being a participant… the camera might be a voyeur in the closet, it might be a stranger on the couch, a shoe… I try and create a scenario that puts me in a different place in a different state of mind.

I love shadows... pianos are a plus.

I love shadows... pianos are a plus.

I apply fashion photography and photojournalism with a unique twist for wedding photography. I approach a bridal preparation session like a fashion event of a major designer… looking for dress and shoe details, details in the room and exploring the area involved from a scenario point of view. I love to come into the room and think about a story I can tell from a different point of view and I love to hide my strobes around the room as I work, moving them as I move. Usually when I first walk in.. I look for a closet and start there… as a piece of clothing or a shoe or a hanger… I will move around the room imagining the motion and evolution of what is happening to the bride.

Weddings are treated as runway shows for me. The unique look of high end fashion photography applied to weddings is amazing to say the least. First, every person coming down that aisle is a story. Using long, fast lenses I am able to remain outside of the limelight and shooting the procession as if they were each their own part of a greater story. That’s what a wedding is, it’s a story. A story you only get once. As I shoot in a fashion style, I also get all the traditional shots that everyone loves to have. The combination of fashion and photojournalism in weddings is one that makes weddings look incredible. Wedding photography is not a competition, I always ask brides to find a photographer that has a portfolio they love. When a bride comes to me, she is usually looking for a fashion edge in her wedding photography. A lot of wedding photographers have the same look and a lot of brides like that same look… and they can save a little money. This isn’t about money, this is about a fusion of art and memories.


Fashion + Wedding Photography

I love fashion photography. It is bursting with creativity and many times edgy. I understand that people like different things in their images. I like to bring a fashion/glamor edge to all my photography. I can edit photos to the preference of my client. Classic black and white images for your wedding, I have a few styles of black and white and sepia styles to choose from. I usually edit images with three different styles. My three primary styles of editing are black and white, color and a style I like to call ultra-real.

My black and white editing also has a few choices ranging from deep black, to high key and then what I likc to call classic chocolate. Deep black focuses on bringing out the deep shadows and mood of the images, high key black and whites are bright and filled with a lot of white, the classic chocolate is not quite a sepia tone image but more of a mix between a deep black and a sepia.

My color images can be edited in a few different ways. One way is the way it was taken right out of the camera with little editing. Another style is soft and vibrant where I work to bring out great color tones and glow without making the image look edited, usually just small editing for perfect color and a little saturation is done. The last color style is toned down to be a mix between a black and white and a hint of color. A lot of black and whites for my child photography are done like this where I make a black and white image and then bring out small bits of almost undetectable color in the eyes, cheeks and lips… sometimes the hair too. It is almost undetectable at first but you will definitely see the difference in some images, especially up close facial portraits.

My signature style is what I like to call ultra-real. It is time consuming and is the reason you might have noticed something different about my images. There is no exact way to edit an image for this style of editing because most images have to be approached on a piece-by-piece basis. Images take a great deal of work to get to jump off the picture. These images have more depth and drama than normal.

I like to mix all these styles up in my photography. I love to sit down with my clients and come up with the way they want their images to look. Many wedding couples want a mix of black and whites, maybe the bridal images in ultra-real and then the rest in color. There is no difference in the cost of different editing. I just like to explain to my clients that they have a lot of options and showing samples of the editing really helps sometimes. I also stress the importance of continuity in the sessions and they should really keep parts of the sessions to similar images. A bridal portrait session might look great if it is all black and white but together they would look like they were not a set if they were a mix of color, ultra-real and two different types of black and whites.

Here are some examples of the editing styles. These are by no means limitations, these are just suggestions for the bride and groom.

Deep Black

Deep Black

High Key

High Key



As Shot

As Shot

Soft and Vivid

Soft and Vivid

Hint of Color

Hint of Color

Ultra-real (Signature)

Ultra-real (Signature)

Visalia Photographer, TGIF, Modeling and Events

This week was a blast, shooting with Natalie, setting up the TGIF Fan Appreciation and a birthday party for my friend’s daughter. I have a lot of shoots coming up, things are getting busy. If you are in California and want to book a photo shoot with me, call me at 559.623.7423 or email me at and I would be happy to give you any information you need.

The photo shoot with Natalie was great, we hopped on an old firetruck just at sunset and shot until the twilight faded. My favorite time to shoot is at sunset and about an hour after the sun goes down. I used an SB-900 and three SB-600’s for the shoot for a total of four strobes. I wanted some harsh highlights so I didn’t use umbrellas with the strobes. It is not hard to make Natalie look beautiful, she does that all by herself.


Natalie Symanski

I just started a new weekly event called TGIF Fan Appreciation for my local fans in the Central Valley. Each week one person is chosen from my facebook fans. That fan is rewarded with a free photo session and is able to pick from a few different types of sessions such as the BFF (Best Friends Forever), the business portrait, pet portrait and more. I like to keep it open to the winner to choose something they want. Also, the client will be given 4 free digital images of their choice and an option to buy fine art prints at a 20% discount. This weeks winner is Samantha Melching. Join our facebook fan page.

One of my closest friend’s daughter just turned 6. We had her birthday at the adventure park so I took my camera along. Well, I always take my camera along wherever I go. We had a blast. The adventure park in Visalia is a great place to have a party because of the variety of things to do. Here are some of the pictures from the day. If you would like to hire me for event photography, feel free to call me at 559.623.7423 or email me at and I will love to talk further.


To book an event call 559.623.7423. I have great weekday rates for birthday parties and other events.

Coming up tomorrow, a photo shoot with a beautiful bridal session with the beautiful Sunni Lund.

Natalie Symanski [Photo Shoot]

This was my second time shooting Natalie. This time it was as part of a Meetup group that I have organized in my local area for photographers. I contacted Natalie because she is easy to work with and fun. She will guide herself and needs very little direction and follows directions well when they are given. Oh yeah, she is beautiful and that always helps a model.

I had first planned to start this shoot at 6pm hoping to get into a little twilight shooting but we were done at about 8pm. I am going to set up something at a later date to shoot at night/dusk with her because I had initially really wanted to play with flash. In this shoot we used primarily a silver reflector and fill flash. I love shooting into the sun and fill flash is absolutely a requirement.

In the past, I have usually always shot in Aperture mode and used Shutter priority when I shot kids or in lower light conditions. I am starting to rely more on manual and slowing down my number of exposures. I used to just start firing away and adjusting Aperture to suit the shot, I am starting to find that Manual is the way to go.






Robert Wheater is a photographer in Visalia. He is engaged in a wide variety of photography but primarily is a glamour and fashion photographer, a wedding photographer and a family portrait and senior portrait photographer. Robert does weddings and photography throughout all of California. If you are interested in contacting Robert for your photographic needs call 559.623.7423 or email at